City Walk Saturdays Kick-Starts New Storytelling Route for Cape Town CBD

100 African Reads. Image courtesy of Lisa Burnell.
100 African Reads. Image courtesy of Lisa Burnell.

Cape Town’s CBD was at play this past Saturday (18 April 2015) as the first ever City Walk Saturdays was launched by the Cape Town Partnership.

The lively event featured Capoeira, tango and swing dance sessions, a tranquillity zone with meditation and yoga, jumping castles and kids storytelling time. Skateboarders whizzed through the space and curious squirrels watched as giant scrabble and pavement chalk unfolded. Onlookers were treated to special sound effects of the Sound Project and puppets entertained people along the route. Mime artists posed and a street studio by Here Be Dragons set the mood with sound.

The City Walk is a new storytelling route that encompasses the Company’s Gardens, St George’s Mall and Fanwalk. It will be activated every third Saturday of the month with a City Walk Saturday – when events, installations, experimental ideas and art will create a buzz in the area. The next ones take place on 16 May and then 20 June from 10am to 2pm.

Says Cape Town Partnership’s, Bulelwa Makalima-Ngewana; “The first City Walk Saturday was an indication of the potential to redefine public space in the Cape Town CBD as an inclusive space for all Capetonians. City Walk Saturdays is not an event created in isolation, but forms part of an evolving perspective shift of the way that Capetonians engage with each other and their city through public space.”

The City Walk aims to surface elements like history, culture, public art and food as well as the formal and informal retail that are already on the walk but the Cape Town Partnership also hopes that citizens will come forward to give different perspectives along the walk.

Says Makalima-Ngewana; “The City Walk must be a space in which people can see themselves and be part of creating and sharing their own stories. It’s about creating a space where conversations can happen and connections can be made between a diversity of people.”

Locals and visitors will be able to access the City Walk area’s cultural, architectural and historical landmarks through the route map (available at outlets along the way and through Cape Town Tourism) and way-finding signs at all times (i.e not just limited to City Walk Saturdays). Local tour guides have also come on board to recognise the City Walk and it has been included into the Cape Town Big 6, which is now the Cape Town Big 7.

This past weekend’s City Walk Saturday also encompassed an Instameet, with Instagrammers coming together to explore the Walk. The hashtag #walkcapetown trended at number one in South Africa on Saturday 18 April.

For more information follow the Cape Town Partnership on Twitter @ctpartnership and use #walkcapetown. Follow on Facebook – Cape Town Partnership, on Instagram as @CapeTownSoul, visit www.capetownpartnership.co.za  or call 021 419 1881.

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